Portrait imaginaire de D. A. F. de Sade (1938) by Man Ray

Portrait imaginaire de D. A. F. de Sade - Man Ray - 1938

Artwork Information

TitlePortrait imaginaire de D. A. F. de Sade
ArtistMan Ray
MediumOil on Canvas with painted wood panel
Dimensions24 1/4 x 18 3/8 in.

About Portrait imaginaire de D. A. F. de Sade

Man Ray’s “Portrait Imaginaire de Sade” is a striking portrayal of the infamous Marquis de Sade. Created in 1938, the painting depicts Sade’s face as translucent, with the Bastille visible in the background. The brick walls of the prison appear to shine through his face, creating an eerie and haunting effect.

This portrait was one of several versions created by Man Ray, including paintings, drawings, and even a bronze sculpture. It is considered a representation of Sade’s character as it comes through his writing.

Currently belonging to The Menil Collection in Houston, this artwork is protected by copyright and may not be available for sale. However, in May 2014, Sotheby’s auctioned off a bronze sculpture of the portrait for USD 15,000.

Man Ray was known for his experimental work and unique approach to art. His “Portrait Imaginaire de Sade” is an excellent example of his ability to capture complex aspects such as character and setting using unconventional techniques.

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